Vernon Fashion Studio’s Blog

Archive for October 2010

Last week, I was in Fabricland in Kelowna and saw a wonderful patchwork fabric made up of different textures and fabrics and the squares were of various sizes. This fabric was perfect for making a baby blanket and other decorative things for a girl baby’s room. I loved it but since I don’t know 100% if the grandchild due in a month is a girl, I didn’t buy it. But I will go back and get some if the baby is a girl. It was too cute!

My current project is pajama pants out of a flannel patchwork fabric I got from Gorgeous Fabrics(link in Sidebar) a few months ago. It is made of 2 1/2″ squares of various flannel fabrics that give an overall look of pink. I love pink and purple and red! The green is nice too. It is called “Madras Plaid Patchwork Cotton Flannel– Brights”.

There are several things to pay attention to. First, look for the direction the seams are pressed in. The crosswise seams should all go towards the same selvage and the lengthwise seams should all go in one direction. Layout your pattern accordingly. I laid my pants out with the lengthwise seams pressed towards the hem.

I planned to sew from the top to hem when constructing the pants. You don’t have to worry about the seams flipping  the other direction  as you sew. It will probably be more comfortable to wear with the seams pressed down. Conventional wisdom says to sew from the hem up on pants and skirts and from the top down on shirts, blouses and dresses. I am ignoring CW in this case.

Also notice I am using flower head pins. I like these for thicker, heavier fabrics. I don’t lose my pins in the fabric. Just be careful with them near an iron. They will melt. There are non-melting long pins available.

Also notice that as you sew curved edges, you will run into the thick corners where the squares all join together. Instead of trying to line up my patches I offset them so I didn’t have two of those thick areas on top of each other. I doubt my hubby will complain about my seams not all matching up.

If you are making something where the seams are more of an issue, then watch your layout very carefully. Put as much of the seam allowance clear of those corners as possible.  This may take some careful measuring on all sides of a pattern piece.

After you cut out your fabric there will likely be areas where the patchwork seams will be partially cut off, leaving this extra seam allowance hanging around your stitching line. Make sure you trim off these pieces.

Gorgeous Fabrics offered versions of this fabric made of cotton so these corners may not be as much of an issue but either way, sew slowly over the thick areas. Don’t want to break a needle!

I used my serger to finish off the seams. The serger didn’t seem to care but I did try to be careful as I sewed. I used the cover stitch machine for the hem and will use it for the casing also. Again, it didn’t seem to mind but I was careful of the thicker sections. I do hate replacing perfectly good needles that have broken.

One other tip for this and any other print you sew, I used varigated thread to construct those garments. I like the look for hems and topstitching. Varigated thread comes in several color combinations to match any print you are sewing.

I just need to finish the casing and elastic for the pants. I got a pink interlock knit to make the top with. As soon as I have them both done, I will do a pattern review and post pictures.

I am hoping to spend most of the weekend at the Studio teaching, working on this project and making costume boot spats for a friend’s daughter’s Halloween costume. Sounds like the best way to spend the weekend!!


Happy Thanksgiving Canada!

Happy Columbus Day America!

This past week was to be my first week of ‘more time for the Studio’! It was a train wreck of a week and the Studio was not involved.

The idea was to cut back on my regular work a bit and spend that time working in and on the Studio. So I told my Manager a month ago that I didn’t want to do work in Kelowna after the end of the month. But things seldom go as we plan and to add insult to injury, I had to spend two days in Kelowna instead of one.

But Kelowna is now over.

However, over the last few weeks I was called on to do some last minute work that the other gal in Vernon was to have done and didn’t. The long and short is that she is out and I have all her work to do now.

So where does this leave me? Probably over worked still and the Studio left to its own devices.

I had plans that will now take longer. I did buy PatternMaster 4 from Wild Ginger and I am liking what I have seen so far. I signed up for their classes on how to use the software but haven’t had time to really do much with them.

A student wants a custom pattern for some yoked pants and that has been tricky but we did get the pattern printed out yesterday. She is making the muslin before we meet again this week.

I made a couple contacts that I want to follow up on for opportunities to showcase myself and my Studio but time will be tight.

I took a sewing job last week that I haven’t had time to work on. Will start that tomorrow.

Today we are celebrating hubby’s 50th birthday with a party this afternoon. I need to get back to those plans so everyone have a good weekend!

I wish I could say I played an active part in the show but all I managed was to tour the quilts, make a couple purchases at the Merchant Mall and ate a nanimo bar in the tea room. Yum! I wore my newly sewn badge for the first time, which was exciting. I felt like I was a very small part of the show which was nice. When the guild does the show again in 3 years, I figure I will be much more involved.

I thought I would post a couple of my favorite quilts in the show. I thought this one was so sassy and fun!

This one features appliqued flowers. I have a similar pattern waiting for its turn in my que. You use the embroidery machine to make the flowers in the block. It is the same technique that I used on the shoe apron.

The next picture is of a wearable art piece:

The front closure is very interesting. I do wish I had noted the names of the ladies who made these beautiful quilts but I thank them for sharing them with us.

This is just a sampling of the fabulous quilts at the show. So what did I buy? Well, I got a kit for a non-gender specific quilt for my new grandbaby. Then there was a flannel lap quilt featuring roses. Looking forward to working on them…the baby quilt first, of course. 😉

My work has kept me too busy the last couple of months to get this dress done any faster. I did a review of this pattern last year when I made it using a light cotton print, so I will just talk about this incarnation of the pattern.

The biggest change I made this time was changing the front button closure to a dark irridescent zipper. I added Hong Kong seam finishing and breast pockets.

I am particularly proud of the pockets. I don’t like breast pockets so I made them match the surrounding fabric. The top stitching gives them away but I can live with that.

Unfortunately, I have not lost enough weight to wear the dress. I lost my diet mojo when I got sick the end of August. I am working on getting it back so that next spring I can wear this lovely dress.

The fabric is a stretch cotton sateen. I love that kind of fabric. Easy to work with, washes up well and lovely to wear. The 3 % stretch is a nice amount. Aids fabric recovery after sitting.

It is starting to get chilly at times so my next project is a quick pair of flannel jammies. Need to be ready when winter hits here. I am thinking it will be a long, cold one this year. Also have been asked to help with a part of a Halloween costume for my friends daughter.

Hope you all are getting some sewing done too!